As if it was just a month ago that I was writing about being half way through the year and now here we are staring the back end of the year in the face!
Godsons growing up
I remember the day he was born as if it was yesterday. I remember the game we were playing in our garden when the call came in to say his arrival was imminent. Then I remember the long wait for news, anxiously waiting for the text.
This picture dropped in to my inbox and oh it was true love, almost as powerful as seeing F for the first time.
And now he is 5! He is funny and handsome and really kinda special. His party’s are always something super special as well and we all had a great time!
National trust membership
Oh how I have missed you?? Why did I think it was a good idea to take a year off? I love that if we have a good day, a free day we can just jump in the car and head off to explore.
This month saw us visit Calke Abbey and Shugborough Estate, both vastly different. Calke Abbey – ‘The unstately stately home’ a perfect description for something so unique and the polar opposite of any National trust site I have visited previously.
I am so pleased to have the passes back and looking forward to exploring more places we’ve yet to visit.
Our Unstately home
July brings with it a ‘period of transition’ and honestly if Rob describes it like that one more time he might find himself transitioning to a tent in the garden!
But what ‘period of transition’ I hear you ask??
Well work begins on our loft conversion.. step 1 – the roof. The easy bit I’d of said but what do I know. Clearly nothing… Because not once, but twice we have had water pouring in through every available crack, and in an old, large house like ours, there are many cracks for water to get through.
The delightful storm of the 24th July 2019 saw Rob, F and I frantically collecting up every available pot, pan, bucket and washing basket lined with rubbish bags to collect the water that was coming in at an alarming rate at 1am. I hate thunderstorms anyway but add the fear of the ceiling in our bedroom coming down I was a complete wreck.
And after just a few hours sleep, I was on edge all day in case more rain was heading our way.
The contractors have been amazing though so I can’t fault them at all, they have worked tirelessly through this heatwave to save us any further incident and of course will make all damage right again.
Short term pain for long term gain is my new mantra!
Rob, F and I took Dad away to Liverpool for the weekend. It had been many years since Dad had been before and I was keen to take him to see all the sights.
We had such a great weekend. We visited the Museum of Liverpool and in particular the John and Yoko exhibition which was recommended to me by the Lovely Jane at Break up, Make up, Wake up and we were not disappointed. I came away feeling like I’d had a very intimate snapshot in to their life together, a lot of what I saw and read I’d had no idea about, it was quite an emotive exhibition and I’d highly recommend.
We took a walk round the docks and were invited on to an old tug boat, now decommissioned but well looked after and the gentleman who look after it were very keen to share it’s history with us. Turns out a relative of my Dad’s used to pilot a similar boat for the same use. F loved pretending to steer the boat and ringing the bell as loud as he could!
We sat and ate a picnic almost in the city centre watching the masses flock to the netball world cup which until the day before we arrived, had no clue it was going on. It made for a great atmosphere.
We then headed to the Cavern, despite visiting before it was still so exciting and I loved experiencing it with my Dad who’d never been before. We stayed for a few drinks but F had hit his Beatle limit, we stood listening to the live music while he sat with his ipod and headphones in! Kids hey!
The following day we found a National trust property to stop at on the way home, This time Shugborough estate. The house and its history was fascinating and we really enjoyed seeing the restoration process of some of the artwork there.
We were lucky to visit on a day the Lichfield apartments were open. These were used as a base for Patrick Lichfield, the famous fashion photographer. The apartment was filled with pictures of some of the most famous people in the world and probably the most awful kitchen I’ve ever seen! But it was a wonderful day out.
The playarea was one of the best I have seen at an NT property and we all made use of it! I particularly liked the zipwire… on several occasions!
The bonus of the day was delivering Dad home successfully without coming across the Formula one or cricket final results! We’d spent all day trying to dodge it so he could go home and watch it from start to finish in the comfort of his own home.
It was a wonderful weekend with all my favourite Men!
Last week of primary school
After the high of Liverpool came the sad reality that F was beginning his last week of Primary school. I for one was not ready for this moment but it was of course inevitable!
The week was always going to be a full on one, I work in a school so I know first hand how much there is to squeeze in to that last week for staff and children. Thankfully F’s school had provided us a full day by day guide on what’s what!
-Monday – ie Report day and SATS results! The day we’d been waiting for, despite trying not to sweat the SATS (see more here SAT’s week is here, Be strong!) I had been anxiously awaiting these.
Firstly is report, the last one of primary school was exactly what I’d hoped it would be. It was the perfect end to his time at this school and to read such lovely things about your child always feels wonderful. The report was much easier to process than the results though, and once the Deputy head at the school I work at deciphered them for me, to say I was over the moon was an understatement! And F was also delighted. Very proud of him.
Tuesday -School play day – F was to tread the boards as Rocky Rockafella in Rock bottom. I’d been running through lines with him for what seemed like months but it was great to see him come to life on stage. And I made it all the way through without crying!
Wednesday – Legoland day – We didn’t have school trips this cool when I was at school!
Thursday – Soiree- Because apparently Prom is not an adequate enough word! They were awarded half a day of school to prepare themselves for the big event and parents could join later in the evening. Thanks to a lovely award ceremony and the most adorable montage of photographs of the children from reception to year 6 and although F didn’t feature until year 5, it still had me in tears. A beautiful way to say goodbye.
Friday – Leavers assembly – As if sitting through one leaving assembly at my own place of work which left me in tears was not enough, I then had to spend the afternoon blubbing through F’s assembly. It was a beautiful way to say goodbye but honestly the most heartbreaking thing in the world is to watch your son crying to the point of hysterical while his friends cry around him. They were all so supportive of each other though which was lovely to see. And the great news is, that 95% of them are all going off to the same high school!
And just like that school is out for summer for us both!
I wrote a post in June with 31 Journal prompts in. It was really well received and I have really enjoyed having a reason to write each day. It has really given me a focus and an opportunity for some needed me time.
I am now working on something similar for next month, and who knows, maybe the month after!
Afternoon tea for Myton hospice
My birthday is 22nd July, Mum was the 23rd July. I loved sharing a birthday with her but as this was the first one without her I knew I needed to mark it or distract myself.
Mum’s favourite thing to do was go to afternoon tea so it seemed fitting to hold an afternoon tea for her. Family and friends were invited along to a venue to celebrate and raise money for Myton Hospice, they’d supported Mum and us all so much that I am always looking for ways to support them.
It was a wonderful day. Hard work but completely worth it. It was lovely to see friends and family come together and raise money for such a good cause. Maybe it’ll become an annual thing, who knows!
Summer Bucket list
This year I decided to create a Summer Bucket List. A fun list of things i’d really like to do with the kids over the summer. I do love a good list and ticking things off makes me really happy.
So far we have completed afternoon tea, go to the cinema, taught F to cook something new, baked a cake, been for a walk each day, washed the car, been to an outdoor splash park, read 2 of 4 books, visited 2 National Trust properties and been to Liverpool. I guess we could tick off spending the day in our PJ’s but minus the PJ’s thanks to the current heatwave!
And as I write this I am running a list of things I need to do before we go camping through my head. So this is scheduled to post while I am away. I will see you on the other side!